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Dynamo cruise past 10-man D.C. United

DynamoWin (Getty)

Overcoming an early red card is never easy, and doing so in the sweltering heat of Houston only makes the task that much more impossible.

D.C. United learned this harsh lesson on Sunday night after goalkeeper Bill Hamid was sent off in the 17th minute for a foul in the penalty area. The Houston Dynamo took full advantage of the sending off to dominate their Eastern Conference rivals on their way to a 4-0 victory at BBCA Compass Stadium.

Brad Davis converted the penalty drawn by Mac Kandji, who Hamid took down in the penalty area with a leg sweep. Will Bruin converted his 10th goal of the season later in the first half and Oscar Boniek Garcia continued the rout in the 67th minute with his first MLS goal. Brian Ching converted an 89th minute penalty to finish off D.C. United.

The victory moved Houston six points clear of New England for the fifth and final playoff spot in the East, while the loss kept D.C. United three points behind first-place Sporting Kansas City at the top of the East standings.

Here are the match highlights:


What did you think of the match? Impressed with Houston's ability to capitalize on the man advantage? Surprised to see D.C. fold down a man? 

Share your thoughts below.


  1. This is the same hemming and hawing that always arises around these situations.

    They’ll settle at 1.9 million pounds.

  2. We were getting down the wings at will. The Kandji PK was the Carr PK was the Boniek assist.

    I’d like to see more of that quick strike mentality and less rote, pointless possession, and aimless crossing. You could probably see with the exception of the Boniek goal, when we lapsed into that approach it is less effective.

  3. All due respect to the DC history but there was a period near the low ebb when DC used to play us very tough with a 5 man midfield. I was at a 0-0 snoozefest where DC blanketed us at home. However the past few years it’s been more like a 442 and we’ve seemed to exploit that at home. Though RFK is another story.

    Don’t get me wrong DC is looking good against the league in general, I’d just see this as not your best matchup if it was the playoffs. I’m a big believer in matchups and some teams just click against others, table or not. Philly used to have our number til last year’s playoffs. LA owns us, particularly at playoff time.

    I just think the red was more of a symptom than the disease, which is for whatever reason, we seem to be able to get down DC’s wings at home.

  4. The difference from recent gamse to this one is that the opposing team was playing a man down the entire game* 😉

    Kidding, Cameron looked great in that role.

  5. Yes, DCU looked stronger offensively before the red card, but the bottom line is that Hamid made a mistake, the ref was happy to pull out the red card and Dynamo won. Things like this happen. As a DCU supporter, I have to say, while the early red card clearly affected the game and perhaps was a bit harsh, Dynamo won fair and square. You are right that DCU lost in Houston in the last three years, but I don’t know if anyone should be making too much out of it. DCU team has changed so much in the last couple of years. Two years ago DCU sucked (and most players from that squad are long gone), last year DCU was better, this year it is one of the best teams in the league (but the early red card affected the game so it is hard to draw too many conclusions). Congrats to Houston on the win.

  6. The difference from recent games to this one for Houston was Cameron’s presence, and yet quite a few people around town still want that deal consummated. Sometimes Cameron is too direct with his midfield play but last night’s heavy dose of early wing throughballs and quick breaks downfield was what the Dr. ordered for an offense that can all too often grind down into half court pointless passing and low percentage crosses. We have some speed we just need to activate it by playing the ball downfield early. Not sure if we keep doing that if it’s Moffat Camargo or Watson back in CM if Cameron’s sold.

  7. If you’ve ever been just taken down in the box on a one on one breakaway, not even playing the ball, not sure you say that. If you watch what Hamid did, he slide tackles him as the ball is going by. So he can’t do the usual sales pitch of, I was diving for the ball with my hand as is my prerogative and tripped you on accident. It looked like a purposeful takedown.

    Now, what some refs might have done, is noted the length of the dribble and asked if Kandji can even catch up, whether it’s a play for contact, etc. Sometimes it’s no-called although with the distorting simulation rules there’s a lot of pressure to make a dramatic call one way or the other.

    But in terms of calling the play itself, late slide tackle by the last man denying the player the chance to finish the play. I think if it was a hand it’s easier to go yellow, and it still could have been, but red’s fair too.

    I’m also bemused no one connects the Carr tackle to the Hamid one.

  8. Yes, but it was end to end stuff, and DC wasn’t finishing. I think it would have been more like the 5-3 LA game, favoring Houston, even if DC had been full strength. Gotta bear in mind road teams come out hard for at least 15 minutes usually.

    DC might have looked better early but you could already see Houston getting down the flanks like they have in a few DC games the past 3 years.

    I think it’s easy to blame Hamid but how was what he did remarkably different than Carr going down for a similar pentalty late? Houston had found something to exploit.

  9. DC was definitely playing well up until the boneheaded move from Hamid. Unfortunately, this is what you get with young goalkeepers. This is the second time Hamid has reccklessly been sent off (he did it last season in the 7th minute against TFC but United battled back for a 3-3 draw).

    Add in the fact that United has been hammered on almost every occasion in Houston (Houston is 7-0-1 lifetime at home against United with 17 goals for and 4 goals against – pretty much as dominant as one team can be against another in this league)and it wasn’t hard to see how this match was going to end up.

    This however was the first game in 8 home games that Houston dominated an opponent. Up to last night’s match, they had been less than impressive at home, including back-to-back 0-0 draws prior to this match.

    it seems that United was the perfect tonic for Houston in terms of a impressive result in their new building.

  10. I could go either way, but lean towards it being a yellow + PK (free goal). Award them the goal they deserve and then keep playing.

  11. As you note, DC was clearly the stronger team before Hamid was sent off. If Pontius and DeRo didn’t have to drop back to play defense the rest of the game, the attack would have kept a consistent pace and likely knocked in several goals.

    Reckless play by Hamid. You hate to blame losses on one play(er), but man….

    Cheers to Houston. They’re looking good regardless.

  12. I felt like DC was stronger offensively before the red — until then it was two way traffic — but Houston’s offense was exploiting DC’s flanks all night, including Boniek’s assist and the later, similar PK. And we had 3 goals on them at home last year in like fashion. So, while this might have been a closer, open shootout if DC had stayed clean in the ref’s books, the attack is something we’ve pulled off on them for like 3 years running at home. To discount that as “10 men” conflates symptom with disease. They haven’t won here in a long time (and the cooler temperatures probably permitted more aggressive offensive tactics).


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